Heading into the 2012 season the secondary was considered by many a position of strength returning 3 starters, Johnny Adams, Darqueze Dennard, and Isaiah Lewis. Heading into the 2013 season, the secondary is still a position of strength led by strong safety Isaiah Lewis and starting cornerback Darqueze Dennard.
Isaiah Lewis came to Michigan State from Indiana and was an immediate contributor. Lewis has been the starting strong safety since his sophomore season and is a key part to the defensive schemes drawn up by Pat Narduzzi. Lewis was rated as a 4 star recruit coming out of high school and probably could have been rated higher if not for knee injuries. The way the Lewis plays reminds me a lot of how Louis Delams of the Detroit Lions plays. Lewis is a hard hitter and plays the game full speed at all times. Expect to see his named called during the 2014 NFL Draft.
Darqueze Dennard came to Michigan State out of Georgia. Coming out of high school, Dennard was only a 2 star recruit but since then he has became one of the top cornerbacks in the NCAA. Dennard has good size, good speed, great ball skills, and can tackle. I believe that ‘Queze is truly one of the few true shutdown corners in all of college football. A strong 2013 season could land Dennard in the first round of 2014 NFL Draft.
Since Dantonio has taken this Michigan State football program over, the secondary has been great; starting with Otis Wiley, then Trenton Robinson, then Johnny Adams, and now Isaiah Lewis and Darqueze Dennard. The next name on that list that could find themselves playing on Sundays is Kurtis Drummond. The Junior free safety burst onto the scene against Boise State in the opening game of the 2012 season. The Broncos were in the red zone looking to get a TD when a pass had Drummond leaning to his right only for that pass to get deflected. Drummond managed to somehow get his hands on the ball and make the classic tip drill interception. Drummond has great closing speed, can shed the block and get to the ball carrier, and also has good ball skills in the open field. Look for Drummond to have a big year in 2013.
A key position battle to keep an eye on during summer camp is for the other starting cornerback. Trae Waynes and Ezra Robinson will be battling it out all summer, and whoever wins that battle will have earned it. Robinson is a redshirt freshman out of Florida and he will see significant playing time this season. Robinson had a great spring game recording 2 interceptions, but he did leave the game early with an apparent leg injury.
Another name to keep an eye on is redshirt freshman safety Demetrious Cox. Pat Narduzzi has been quoted as saying the Cox could have been an immediate contributor last season. Cox will see the field this fall backing up either Lewis or Drummond.
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